Cut up, written over and eventually recovered
Karl Larsson is an artist, poet and editor. These diverse positions have coalesced in an artistic practice that can be described as both editorial and literary, but that differs from writing in a conventional sense in its focus on spatial experience, embodiment and activism.
For the exhibition at Galerie Nordenhake Larsson has produced a series of work that deals with the question of how literary figures are preserved through history, and how a poetic experience can have relevance outside poetry itself. In nine individual works a shared narrative is constructed through the notion of the palimpsest, a manuscript which has been written over by another text, thus hiding its original meaning. The etymological explanation of the word palimpsest, which derives from Ancient Greek, states that the word is put together by "palin", (again) and "psao", (I scrape). It is also through repetition and the alteration of historical and material surfaces many of the works come alive in the exhibition.
Thy Life-Blood Tracks its Parent Lake, titled after one of Lord Byron's last poems, shows an illustration of the poet from 1810 next to a drawing of Charles Byron -- the future lord -- made from a 2010 photograph. The uncanny resemblance between the two young men bridges a gap in time and creates not only a link but also rises questions of beauty, youth, death and life -- issues central to the Romantic poets, and fundamental for all human beings.
Sundial of the Exiled, a bronze cast of wooden planks and a dagger resting on a transparent plinth, is a fixed shadow play in which rough debris and a precise tool becomes part of a narrative of stillness, timelessness and potential violence. The carefully modelled bronze sculpture has marks of fingerprints and manual handling, accentuating the absence of an originator or author, and leaving the (crime)scene in the hands of the spectator.
At 19.00 Larsson will give a poetry reading at the gallery, during the opening.
Karl Larsson (1977) has exhibited in solo exhibitions in venues such as Signal, Malmö (2012), CAC, Vilnius, and Corner College, Zurich (2011), Index, Stockholm, and Neuer Aachener Kunstverein, Aachen, DE (2010), Jan van Eyck Academy, Maastricht (2009). Group exhibition venues include Frutta, Rome, NGBK, Berlin, and Parra/Romero, Madrid (2012), HIAP, Helsinki, and 6th Momentum Biennial, Moss (2011), Passerelle FAC, Brest, FR, Modernautställningen, Moderna Museet, Stockholm and Ystad Konstmuseum, Ystad (2010).
Larsson has five published books of poetry. His book Form/Force will be published in a German translation by Walther König Verlag and in English translation by Black Square Press both in 2013.